“A veces las circunstancias de la vida despiertan en nosotros muchas pasiones y sueños que estan dormidos o anulados por muchos años, asi comence VR Seeds & Stones . . . porque las circunstancias hicieron crecer esa semilla que estaba muy dentro de mi con ganas de florecer, a eso le llamo una gran oportunidad!”
When Viviana Lopez moved to the United States in 2012 from Spain, she was excited to begin a new life and become a businesswoman. Originally from Colombia, she had an idea for a unique business that she could create in her home in Bothell. She was determined to turn her idea into a reality. But, with limited resources and without a strong personal network, she did not know where to start.
“Sometimes the circumstances of life awaken in us many passions and dreams that are dormant or canceled for many years”
The time was right for Viviana to transform her dreams into VR Seeds & Stones. Her idea was entrepreneurial, creative, and drew on her heritage. She had a vision of creating colorful jewelry out of fruits and seeds, employing materials and family members from Colombia. “Behind each jewel, there’s a story of an artisan woman who we are able to support with our project,” she said. Her jewelry does more than look beautiful and smell wonderful, it creates jobs for people back home. Launching VR Seeds & Stones was a huge leap of faith, but she knew that with the right support she could do it.
The journey has not been easy, especially navigating a complex business environment in her second language. “When we come from other countries, especially we Latinos, we arrive with many business ideas, dreams, and too many doubts about how to execute them…This is when we need organizations like Ventures. [It] makes our work easier and makes our path easier,” she said. When Viviana heard about Ventures, she enrolled in our Spanish Business Basics Course. Afterward, she took both our financial management and marketing courses through our Latino Program. This bridged the language gap by providing learning experiences and services in a bilingual environment.
Viviana has learned that there are many challenges in entrepreneurship, especially for members of the Latino community in the U.S.—but Ventures has inspired her to focus on her business. Despite the many challenges, she says “Ventures came into my life and helped me find my focus and clarify my ideas… and the constant training from Ventures and its great team of professionals will help me grow as a person and a business owner.”In Our Entrepreneurs, Success Spotlight